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August 30 post: After a 334 km transfer to the most northwestern region of the Spain before the rest day, we are ready to resume action. Stage 11 is a hilly stage in the Galicia region ending in the long, two-tiered 30 km Alto de la Manzaneda HC climb to a ski resort that gets steep towards the end. The final tier is 19 km @ 5.9%. The official source says, this is the "first unprecedented mountain top finish in La Vuelta 2011 and the first stage of three held in Galicia since 2007." I think what they mean is this will be the toughest summit finish yet.

This is very similar to the La Covatilla finish on Stage 9 so we could be in for more fireworks. Many of the pure climbers will be extra motivated now that they've lost a lot of the time on the stage 10 individual time trial. — Steve

Final Climb: